October 5, 2009

Valley Creek Tenkara

With the Eagles bye week this past weekend, I decided to hit up Valley Creek in Valley Forge National Park last Sunday. I also used this as my maiden voyage into Tenkara...a style of Japanese fly-fishing I previously posted about, which utilizes a rod, a line, and no reel.

It's very simplistic fishing and since you can't cast great distances, requires some stealth to get close to the fish without spooking them. The rod I used is a telescoping 11' model called the Iwana that folds down to about 20". It's very compact and easy to transport from area to area. You also don't use standard fly line, you use a 10' 6" furled line to which I attached about a 4' 6x leader. All of that leads to a very soft presentation on the water surface. It excels with dry flies, but you can fish subsurface as well.

As I mentioned, this was my first time trying Tenkara and to be honest, I didn't catch a lot of fish. I blame myself as I probably spooked more holes than I should of (I don't fish Valley often), which shut down more fish than I would have wanted. The only one that fell to my Tenkara fly was this little guy. I plucked him from the hole pictured below.

In the end, I do think this style is going to make me a better fly angler (not giving up my 3wt yet), just because it requires some extra discipline and thought before you approach a "fishy" area and make your first cast. For those reasons, I think I'm hooked on this method of fishing small creeks and streams.

1 comment:

  1. Very interesting technique. I will watch and read more as you post on this technique. I could see where it would be fun.